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More needed for WA small businesses following Federal Budget

The Federal Budget was handed down recently and has been welcomed by Master Builders Association of Western Australia (MBA WA), as it includes certain elements that support small businesses – many of which are in the WA building and construction industry.

The budget has focused on the cost of living to alleviate the pressure Western Australians are currently facing. In doing so, petrol prices will be reduced up to 22 cents per litre, bringing down the fuel excise for at least six months, which will also help support many small-to-medium builders and tradespeople who have been hit hard by the cash and credit crunch.

Support for the establishment of wood plantations over the five years from 2021-22, worth $86.2 million, and the Modern Manufacturing Strategy will receive an additional $328.3 million in funding.

For businesses with an annual turnover below $50 million, a $120 tax deduction will be provided for every $100 worth of expenditure on selected digital technologies like cloud computing, cyber security and web design. A maximum deduction of $100,000 per year is permitted.

The Federal Budget provides resources to support an additional 35,000 extra places for apprentices and trainees through extensions to existing programs and a $2.8 billion increase to trade apprenticeships. New apprenticeships will receive $5000 payments and employers who take them on will receive $15,000 in wage subsidies.

Over the next four years, from 2022-23, $38.6 million will be provided to allow additional support to women who commence trade occupations that are higher paying on the Australian Apprenticeship Priority List.

The budget has also delivered upon housing, providing significant expansion of the Home Guarantee Scheme, doubling places made available under the scheme to 50,000.

We will see an additional $17.9 billion in infrastructure commitments over the forward estimates period, and an investment into 12 existing and new WA infrastructure projects.

The Federal Budget also provides a new set of Commonwealth Procurement Rules, which are designed to enhance opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises to participate in major government projects.

MBA WA welcomes the Federal Budget and will continue to advocate for the building and construction industry, leading into the federal election.

This election must be about economic recovery and how best to manage that. This was a core message when we launched the Master Builders Australia Election Advocacy Campaign in Perth this week.

We need an economic plan that will help the 40,000 small businesses in our industry, which are currently suffering a severe cost and cash flow crunch.

MBA WA will continue to advocate on behalf of the building and construction industry, especially throughout the federal election. View our campaign material at www.strongbuilding.com.au.

Consider becoming a member today. Speak to our membership team on 9476 9800 or email membership@mbawa.com to receive the latest news from MBA WA.

Q&A with MBA Housing and Construction Director Jason Robertson

The Question

There’s a couple of houses getting built on my street, and I saw some items next to the skip bins that I was thinking would be useful.

Some small children were rummaging around looking at the stuff. It’s going to landfill anyway, surely. Any thoughts?

The Answer

Given the school holidays and Easter is near, this is a good question you have raised.

As the saying goes, “it isn’t like old times”.

The truth is, over holiday periods, unfortunately, good intentions have unintended consequences.

A common scenario is with building sand supplies. We have often heard of someone saying, “I am building my children’s sandpit and I am missing a few items that I can see are on a builder’s site next door. Surely it’s okay to take them, as it looks like they have finished with them and they are near the skip bin”.

This, unfortunately, is not the case. It’s still the property of the builder.

With skip bins, it’s still the case too. Even though it might look like, or be rubbish, not only is there the ‘property of’ issue, but there’s also another important factor.

Building sites are off limits to the public, as they are not safe to wander onto or play on. Builders take all necessary precautions, and we have all seen children playing on and spreading the sand everywhere.

While it may seem, and even be, harmless in many cases, there are risks and it should always be discouraged.

Finally the other thing that seems to ramp up, sadly, over holiday breaks is illegal dumping in skip bins and vandalism onsite.

We often see bins getting filled with old furniture, TVs and mattresses that, obviously, are not from the builder’s site. In the end, this costs the homeowner more money and the builder time and delays.

Stay safe over the holidays and look out for others too.

CONTACT Master Builders WA, 9476 9800, www.mbawa.com

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